Solar Sculptures – Prototyping and Building

April 2, 2010

The building process for Jason Krugman and Christian Cerrito’s contribution to the 2010 Elemental Energy show at the Schuylkill Environmental Education Center in Philadelphia.

The bottom image shows the first prototype for the sculptures’ mechanism. Several small solar panels (or possible 1 larger one for the final version) will be perched atop the each piece. The cells gather sunlight and convert it into electricity to turn a geared DC motor. The motor and cam wheel will sit inside a weather-sealed enclosure in the upper part of the sculpture. A solar engine circuit will briefly store up the energy in a large capacitor, and then dump in out to the motor, causing it to pulse, slowing down the rotation of the cam. The cam will lift the pendulum away from the piece, and then quickly release it, allowing it to fall and strike the resonating box comprising the lower part of the sculpture.

Its our hope that each of the 12 sculptures will have a unique sound, and varied lengths between strikes, depending on how much sun is falling upon them. As the sun traces across the sky, the sculptures will make sounds at differing intervals, adding a subtle and interesting sonic component to their forested installation space.

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